KEIGHLEY'S unbeaten run finally came to an end in Yorkshire Two on Saturday, as they lost 10-6 at Wath Upon Dearne in an ugly encounter.

The West Yorkshire side had won 13 and drawn two of their opening 15 league games, but they went down here to fifth-placed Wath in a hard-fought battle that could have gone either way.

Keighley's lead at the summit is still seven points, after title rivals Hullensians lost 19-12 at Wensleydale and fellow high-flyers Wetherby saw their match at Wheatley Hills postponed.

Back to this game, and Wath started well, intent on using their big forwards to great effect.

Some good interplay took them deep into the visitors' territory, but strong defence allied to a slippery pitch allowed Keighley to hold firm.

Eventually, Keighley got into the swing of the game and mounted a series of attacks.

However, their forward drives were well countered, which gave the backs slow ball at best.

Even so, centres Adam Horsfall and new partner Alan Ebbrell made good ground, but it was difficult to get the ball wide to escape the Wath pack.

After a promising start, the game turned into a slugging match up front, with neither side willing to give an inch.

Midway through the first half, Wath opened the scoring with a penalty for their outside half Jack Whitlam.

The stalemate continued, which led to increased frustration for Keighley’s scrum half George Marshall, who was yellow carded.

The second half began with an aerial duel, as both teams attempted to gain ground through the boot.

Keighley’s Jack Atkinson at full-back did well, attempting at every opportunity to run the ball back from deep within his own half, though unfortunately for him the defence absorbed his every effort.

The one consolation was a penalty for outside half Alex Brown, which helped pull Keighley back level at 3-3.

The game then once again settled into a stalemate and a distinct contrast in styles.

The bigger Wath pack, driven on by veteran scrum-half Joe Bartlett, played to their strengths, using the direct route down the middle.

Keighley on the other hand wanted to move the ball wide, but it was forward pressure from the hosts that told in the end.

Some close interplay deep in the Keighley 22 gave second row Luke Stead the chance to drive over under the posts, and Whitlam added the conversion to put his side 10-3 in front.

Towards the end of the half, Keighley managed to gain the upper hand, and a further penalty for Alex Brown reduced the arrears to just four points.

Unfortunately for the visitors their efforts were too little, too late.

Wath gained possession at the death and through sensible interplay, they kept possession among the forwards, winding the clock down to the final whistle.

In terms of possession and territory, Wath deserved their victory, and Keighley their losing bonus point.

This coming Saturday, Keighley will be hoping to return to winning ways, at home to Ripon.